Lions eager to build on cup semi-final success during home double header in BBL
PUBLISHED: 14:00 13 December 2018
London Lions face two British Basketball League fixtures at the Copper Box Arena this weekend as they welcome both London City Royals and Sheffield Sharks.
Coach Vince Macaulay and his side will face capital rivals the Royals on Friday evening as they look to continue their tremendous start to the campaign.
They will then also take on Sheffield on Sunday afternoon as they look to build on last weekend’s cup success as they progressed into the final with a 170-160 aggregate victory over Newcastle Eagles.
The Eagles had won 75-73 at Sport Central on Friday night, but it will be the Lions heading to Birmingham on Sunday January 27, 2019 for the chance to win silverware after they sealed a 97-85 home win on Sunday.
The visitors sped out on an 8-2 run on the back of a pair of triples from Fab Flournoy, but the Lions had their game plan and stuck to it.
Former two-time MVP Rahmon Fletcher was targeted defensively and the Eagles talisman was locked down by Jordan Spencer in the first half to just two points whilst on the offensive end, the home side led by a point after the first quarter.
In the second quarter, Ladarius Tabb and Paul Guede kept the scoreboard moving, and it was Guede who had the last say with a triple as the Lions led 53-45 at the midway mark.
If Fletcher was sick of Spencer, it was Jerelle Okoro’s turn to hound him in the second half.
Justin Robinson nailed some beautiful strikes, before Spencer and Kervin Bristol combined for a two-handed slam.
It was Brandon Peel this time who hit a triple on the buzzer, this time at the end of the third quarter, as the Lions would lead by 11 on the night and nine on aggregate.
Despite a flurry from the Eagles, the Lions went on a 14-6 run as Guede hit a pair of triples as the visitors tried a zone defence to slow the rampant Lions down.
As the end loomed for the visitors, pride saw them hit back but Robinson returned to the floor to bring the Lions home, hitting four successive free throws as the Eagles had to foul.
Tabb led the way with 22 points and 10 rebounds, as Robinson had 19 points and seven assists and Peel added 19 points and 12 rebounds.